U.S. spending on prisons grew at three times rate of school spending: report

U.S. spending on prisons grew at three times rate of school spending: report

U.S. state and local spending on prisons and jails grew at three times the rate of spending on schools over the last 33 years as the number of Americans behind bars ballooned under a spate of harsh sentencing laws, a government report released Thursday said. U.S. Secretary of Education John King said the report's stark numbers should make state and local governments reevaluate their spending priorities and channel more money toward education. Between 1979 and 2012, state and local government expenditures grew by 107 percent to $534 billion from $258 billion for elementary and secondary education, while corrections spending rose by 324 percent to $71 billion from $17 billion, the U.S. Department of Education report found.

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